A $3.5 million development, comprising two restaurants, a
bakery, offices and four apartments in two separate buildings,
is proposed for Dunedin's St Clair Esplanade.
The proposal was announced yesterday by restaurateur Murray
The Esplanade block already has four licensed restaurants, a
hotel, motel, serviced apartments and three small,
non-hospitality businesses within its boundaries.
Mr Macarthy has owned the vacant Forbury Rd section in the
Esplanade block for about 15 years. In 2011, he bought the
seafront restaurant Neptuno, neighbouring motels and a
Bedford St house, all for more than $2.3 million, out of
It is not the first time Mr Macarthy, who also operates a
chain of 11 Thai restaurants, has put forward a
build-proposal for his St Clair properties.
However, he said yesterday that once building consent had
been gained, construction could begin in June and the two
two-storey premises be finished by December.
''The difference [this time] is instead of building and
operating a restaurant ourselves, we will be leasing
''This needs to happen. It stacks up, and I've now got the
time to focus on this project ... and I'm sick of people
asking,'' he quipped about earlier postponements.
On the cleared Forbury Rd section, both the ground and first
floors were designed for two separate restaurants, each with
outdoor terraces. Two three-bedroom apartments were planned
for the second floor.
The existing Bedford St house would be demolished and the new
building would include a bakery and shop on the ground floor,
office space on the first floor and two two-bedroom
apartments on the second storey.
He already had a bakery lessee, who also wanted to buy an
apartment. Mr Macarthy was yet to begin marketing all the
commercial areas, and the other three apartments would likely
be rented, he said.
Four car parks to service the apartments would be provided
behind the Bedford St building.
Both buildings were designed by Dunedin architect Mason and
Mr Macarthy said Mason and Wales had had a ''favourable''
initial council response, and expected to file building
permit applications within weeks.
He estimated both premises could be built for about $3.5
million, financed by himself, and not requiring financing by
pre-selling the apartments ''off the plan''.
Other plans to extend Neptuno to its seaward front boundary
were on hold. Mr Macarthy still had to consult the council on
plans for up to 33 units across the motel complex frontage.
A $5.5 million-$7 million proposal to build a three-story,
six-apartment block on seafront land between restaurants
Neptuno and The Esplanade ''is still live''. A spokeswoman
for the Wellington-based company said yesterday when
contacted expressions of interest were still being sought,
with ''definite offers'' for two apartments.
''Yes, it's still live,'' she said of the proposal.